Implementation of a technology monitoring and intelligence system.

Keys to understand the essential concepts in the deployment of a technology monitoring intelligence system.

The process must respond to the organization strategy. This kind of systems are efficient if they attend to people and organisation needs. Therefore, the technology monitoring process must be kept simple, giving priority to the analysis efforts against collecting information and working for everyone to be involved in it. It is essential to take as a starting basis a self-testing for the initial situation and to determine a strategy, which will be broke down into general objectives, specific goals, tasks, deadlines and resources, including evaluation mechanisms and possible deviations analysis.

Deployment of the system:
In previous posts, the general stages of the technology monitoring cycle and its main associated tasks were described. Now, it is important to address a key number of elements that an organization must undertake to implement a monitoring system. Those are:

● Information sources.
● Involved people on the process.
● Guidelines for analysis.
● Expected products and results.
● Distribution of tasks.

The monitoring self-testing:
Before beginning the implementation of a monitoring system an evaluation of the organization’s initial situation should be done to detect the weakest points in the value chain. For that purpose, there are several different types of technology monitoring and competitive intelligence self-tests. It should focus on certain aspects of the organisation, such as:

A. Management method and information culture.
B. Knowledge and access to information sources.
C. Systematic exploitation of information sources.
D. Information evaluation and analysis.
E. Information dissemination.
F. Habits of information used for decision making.

In the following link, there is an example of a self-testing monitoring diagnostic developed by CDE (Spain): monitoring self-test.

Key Intelligence Topics KIT:
From an operational standpoint, KIT are related to the goals and objectives of the monitoring system and it refers to:
● External and independent issues to the organization, which evolution is fluctuating and affects critically the organization’s competitiveness.
● They are inherent in each organization’s activity.
● They depend on the strategy.
● They vary over time.
● They may be accompanied by indicators, descriptors, keywords, priority, time horizon, etc.

Those factors, external to the organization’s control, depend upon the strategy and the competitive environment. In turn, they can be qualified for a better description in KIT related to:
● Technology
● Market
● Legislation
● Economic developments
● Socio-demographic factors

For the establishment of these factors, we should pay attention and answer to a series of questions within the organization itself, such as:
● What is critical for strategic deployment?
● How important are the KIT for my organization?
● Is it temporary or continuous?
Through these series of questions and its classification, better treatment to each Key Intelligence Topic can be applied.

Roles in the monitoring system:
For an efficient system work, it is essential to attend to the organization and people management. The staff will depend on the characteristics of each enterprise, especially on the business size and the allocated economic resources.
Thus, different roles can be allocated, such as:
● Dynamiser/promoter or system administrator: this is a key figure and the last responsible for the procedure. This person takes care of the system’s running process, the correct articulation of all resources and looking for the achievement of expected results.
● Decision-makers: those are the clients of the system’s results and explore all possibilities for a better decision with fewer risks.
● Collectors: those are in charge of being in contact with key actors and collect information (technical service, commercials, providers, etc.).
● Experts: those who evaluate, interpret information and help drawing conclusions.
● ICT experts: those who manage and maintain the computer system working.
All the rolls are important and all of them interconnected.

Monitoring and Intelligence system results.
It is important to address the following aspects:
● Validation and classification of information:
○ Traceability: who said what and when.
○ Recognition of strategic information sources.
● Shared and updated knowledge about the competitive environment:
○ Files: competitors, technologies, potential partners, leaders, customers, trends, etc.
● Newsletters records:
○ Internal communication.
○ Narrowcasting inside and outside the organisation.
● Portfolio of ideas, opportunities, rated and prioritized projects.

Final recommendations for the implementation of a monitoring and intelligence system.
The general steps for implementing the system are:
1. Involvement and presence of the direction /CEO.
2. Definition of the collaborator's team.
3. Designate participants and their roles.
4. Diagnose the starting situation.
5. Set deadlines, budget and improvement targets.
6. Define the procedure in response to the technology monitoring cycle.
7. Evaluation and periodical review of the system.